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Human Resource Management

Purpose of Course  showclose

US firms maintain their competitive advantages by holding on to resources their competitors cannot obtain.  What do we mean by “resources?”  The term “resources” can refer to anything from rights to a certain oil field, the patent on touchscreen technology, or an exclusive contract with the government.  More often than not, however, a company’s most valuable resources are its employees.  Often, having the “right” employees – the individuals capable of developing iPhones or finding new oil fields – separates the highly successful firms from their less successful competitors.  As you begin the journey of this course, you might be saying to yourself, “My company may say I am its most valuable resource, but it really do not treat me like I am valued.”  This feeling is one of many elements associated with managing human capital.

In the United States, the subfield of Human Resource Management (alternatively known as Human Capital Management) has a history that dates back almost a century, but the most strategic components of this course emerged as a result of transitions in the workforce in the late 1960s.  After the passing of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, all organizations were mandated by the Federal Government to adhere to specific laws, which governed how an organization should respond to and treat their human capital.  The transition of women and minorities into the workplace and their resulting contributions to business success incentivized organizations to develop a better understanding of how to integrate all employees into a culture that would reinforce and support the vision and mission of a business.

Human Resource Management refers to the practice of strategically allocating the most valuable resources – people – to the right areas of a firm.  This practice involves careful strategizing, good leadership, and other solid business practices.  Human Resource Management requires more than a strong human resources department; it requires smart, capable team managers working in conjunction with an HR department to carry out common goals.

The key to understanding and applying the concepts of this course revolves around learning how to become uncomfortable.  What exactly does that mean?  Every one of us has a core belief system shaped by our individual experiences, situations, and circumstances.  This belief system informs and guides our perceptions (i.e. what we believe is or is not valid/applicable to the situation or circumstance with which we are dealing).  We naturally gravitate towards those things with which we have some understanding, and we have an intrinsic bias against those things that do not make sense to us, that we perceive as unethical, or that make us uncomfortable.  To effectively manage human capital, you have to learn how to step outside of your comfort zone and make strategic decisions in the best interest of the company, rather than those that make you “comfortable.”

You know the basics of managing human capital from your Principles of Management course (BUS208), but this course will introduce you to more advanced topics in the field.  You will learn that identifying the best employees begins with identifying the firm’s needs and carrying out a proper recruitment and selection process.  Training, development, and performance evaluations can then shape the selected employee into an ideal firm resource.  Finally, adequate and incentivizing compensation can keep those resources with the firm.  This course will cover all these topics and more.

Though you may not be planning to pursue a career in human resource management, much of your career success will depend upon working with the right people.  This course will help you appreciate and leverage this fact.

Course Information  showclose

Welcome to BUS301: Human Resource Management.  General information about this course and its requirements can be found below.
 
Course Designer: Johnny Jackson MBA, MHRM
 
Primary Resources: This course is comprised of a range of different free, online materials.  However, the course makes primary use of the following materials:
 
Requirements for Completion: In order to complete this course, you will need to work through each unit and all of its assigned materials.  In each unit of this course, there is strategic information provided to support your understanding of managing human capital.  It is very important that you take notes as you work through the completion of this course, and use these notes to support your critical analysis of the assessments completed within each unit.  You will also need to complete the following:
  • Unit 1 Matching Assessment 
  • Unit 1 Quiz
  • Unit 2 Job Analysis
  • Unit 2 Job Description Assessment
  • Unit 3 Quiz
  • Unit 4 Training and Development Assessment
  • Unit 5 Quiz
  • Unit 6 Compensation Assessment
  • Unit 6 Quiz
  • Unit 7 OSHA Assessment
  • Unit 8 Labor History and Unions Assessment
  • The Final Exam
Note that you will only receive an official grade on your final exam.  However, in order to adequately prepare for this exam, you will need to work through the quizzes and assessments listed above.  Most of the assessments contain grading rubrics, or tools that will help you grade your own work.  While scoring high on an assessment is a great incremental measure, your ultimate goal should be to retain the information presented in the course.  In order to “pass” this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the Final Exam.  Your score on the exam will be tabulated as soon as you complete it.  If you do not pass the exam, you may take it again.
 
Time Commitment: This course should take you a total of 87.75 hours to complete.  Each unit includes a “time advisory” that lists the amount of time you are expected to spend on each subunit.  These should help you plan your time accordingly.  It may be useful to take a look at these time advisories and to determine how much time you have over the next few weeks to complete each unit, and then to set goals for yourself.  For example, Unit 1 should take you 17 hours.  To make the process of completing Unit 1 more manageable, you are greatly encourage to block out time over the course of a specified period, like a calendar week, and schedule yourself to work through a specific subunit on each day.  There is also a matching assessment and a quiz in Unit 1, both designed to examine your comprehension and synthesis of the material in this unit.  For example, Unit 1 takes approximately 17 hours to complete.  Perhaps you can sit down with a calendar and decide to complete subunit 1.1 (a total of 3 hours) on Monday; subunit 1.2 (a total of 4 hours) on Tuesday; etc.
 
Tips/Suggestions: As you work through the course, you are again greatly encouraged to take notes.  You should keep your notes organized and properly labeled, as they will serve you well as you prepare to complete an assessment and support your completion of the final exam as well.  Pay careful attention when watching a video in the course, as this material not only serves to reinforce a concept being presented, but there is also information pulled from the videos included within your assessments.  It will be useful to use your notes as a review prior to completing the Final Exam.

 
A version of this course is also available in iTunes U.
Preview the course in your browser or view our entire suite of iTunes U courses.  

Learning Outcomes  showclose

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  • Describe how to effectively manage human capital and properly assess knowledge, skills, and abilities to find valuable resources (people).
  • Identify key laws and legislation that shape how human capital decisions should be made.
  • Explain why managing human capital is relevant for all managers in any organization.
  • Define and conduct a job analysis and discuss the validity of an analysis in support of other key human capital functions.
  • Understand and develop a personnel plan, creating successful strategies for recruiting and selecting valuable human capital.
  • Identify and apply the concepts associated with employee safety and health in support of effectively managing human capital.
  • Create strategies to support the training and development of human capital.
  • Identify and apply the concepts/issues associated with compensation and benefits to create an attractive environment that draws valuable resources to an organization.
  • Explain the distinction between performance management and performance appraisals.
  • Conceptualize HR strategies to improve overall organizational success.
  • Identify the key elements and contexts of affirmative action and use that insight to support making informed decisions regarding diversity when managing human capital.
  • Define and apply the concepts of labor and employee relations, and clearly define the relationship between the employer and the employee.
  • Identify ethical issues facing HR managers today and explain how HR can help to build an ethical organization.
  • Discuss the impact that career/succession planning has on human capital.
  • Explain how to develop a personnel plan, creating successful strategies for recruiting, selecting, onboarding, and retaining valuable human capital.
  • Explain why strategic resource planning is necessary to attract, recruit, and retain valuable human capital.
  • Identify current trends and challenges in managing human capital today.

Course Requirements  showclose

In order to take this course, you must:

√    Have access to a computer.

√    Have continuous broadband Internet access.

√    Have the ability/permission to install plug-ins or software (e.g. Adobe Reader or Flash).

√    Have the ability to download and save files and documents to a computer.

√    Have the ability to clearly hear audio files and recorded lectures.

√    Have the ability to open Microsoft files and documents (.doc, .ppt, .xls, etc.).

√    Be competent in the English language.

√    Have read the Saylor Student Handbook.

√    Have completed BUS208: Principles of Management.

Unit Outline show close


Expand All Resources Collapse All Resources
  • Unit 1: The Nature of Managing Human Capital  

    People are a firm’s most valuable resource, and many of the most successful firms proudly profess this fact in recruitment materials, press events, and statements of their corporate values.  Human Resource Management has been a focus in corporate strategy for the last half-century, especially in light of the emergence of a service-based economy (whereby most firms today provide services as opposed to the products produced by firms in the past).

    In this unit, you will learn about the role that Human Capital Management plays within any organization.  You will also review a variety of major topics pertaining to human capital, including the nature of HR management, strategies for HR management and planning, the legal framework for equal employment as it applies to managing diversity, and the application of affirmative action.  Some of these subjects are so complex and diverse that they deserve their own courses.  For example, the field of Managing Equal Employment and Diversity is so broad that the US federal government has created the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to ensure that individuals receive equal treatment in employment-related activities.  These topics will be touched upon in this unit to so that you can focus on the core of human capital management in the remaining units.

    Unit 1 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 1 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 1.1 The Changing Nature of Human Resource Management  
  • 1.1.1 Defining Human Capital: The Industrial Model  
    • Reading: BrightHub.com: N. Nayab’s “A Traditional Approach to Human Resource Management”

      Link: BrightHub.com: N. Nayab’s “A Traditional Approach to Human Resource Management (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this article, which discusses human resource management from a traditional perspective.  You will be introduced to human resources from a time when the United States had an industrial blue-collar foundation.  This was an era when trade unions dominated workplace decisions, and there was more of a focus on the functional activities associated with managing human capital.  There was not a lot of strategy built into the direct application of human capital management.  This reading covers sub-subunits 1.1.1 through 1.1.3.

      Reading this article should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above. 

  • 1.1.2 Human Resource Functional Activities and Process Orientation  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath subunit 1.1.  In particular, pay attention to the text under the heading “Focus on Functional Activities and Process Orientation.”

  • 1.1.3 Reconciling Human Resource Conflict  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath subunit 1.1.  In particular, pay attention to the text under the heading “Reconciliation between Management and Work Force.”

  • 1.1.4 Overcoming Top Myths in Human Resources  
  • 1.1.5 The Challenges of HR in Today’s Workplace  
  • 1.1.6 HR Jobs of the Future  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.1.5.

  • 1.1.7 The Strategic Nature of Managing Human Capital  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.1.5.

  • 1.1.8 The Explosion of Outsourcing  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.1.5.

  • 1.1.9 The HR Trends of the Decade  
  • 1.2 Strategic HR Management and Planning  
  • 1.2.1 What Is Strategic Human Resource Management?  
    • Lecture: YouTube: Rick Speckmann’s “JobDig HR Series: Human Resource Strategy”

      Link: YouTube: Rick Speckmann’s “JobDig HR Series: Human Resource Strategy” (YouTube)

      Instructions: Click on the link above and watch this brief video.  Rick Speckmann is the CEO of EmPerform, a company that helps organizations evaluate their human capital and create strategies to support their missions.  This lecture will provide you with an introduction to strategic HR management and planning.  After watching this video, please write a brief paragraph that provides a definition of human resource management.

      Watching this video and writing your brief paragraph should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Note: For more information on JobDig.com or Rick Speckmann, please visit the jobdig.com web page on Rick Speckmann.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

  • 1.2.2 Strategy Integration  
  • 1.2.3 Developing a Human Capital Strategy  

    Note: This topic is covered by the resource assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.2.2.  In particular, please focus on Sections 1 and 2 of the reading to address developing a human capital strategy.

  • 1.2.4 Developing a Direction for Strategy  

    Note: This topic is covered by the resource assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.2.2.  In particular, please focus on Section 3 and Section 4.1 of the reading to address developing a direction for strategy.

  • 1.2.5 Designing a Human Resource Planning System  

    Note: This topic is covered by the resource assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.2.2.  In particular, please focus on Section 4.2 of the reading to address designing the human resource planning system.

  • 1.2.6 Planning for Total Human Capital Management  

    Note: This topic is covered by the resource assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.2.2.  Focus on Section 4.3 of the reading for information on planning the total workforce.

  • 1.2.7 Investing in and Assessing Your Human Capital  

    Note: This topic is covered by the resource assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.2.2.  Focus on Section 4.5 and 4.6 of the reading for information on investing in and assessing human capital.

  • 1.3 The Legal Framework for Managing Equal Employment and Diversity  
  • 1.3.1 Workplace Diversity: What Is It? Can It Be Done?  
    • Web Media: YouTube: Workopolis Careers Channel: Hamlin Grange’s “Workforce Diversity”

      Link: YouTube: Workopolis Careers Channel: Hamlin Grange’s “Workforce Diversity” (YouTube)
       
      Instructions: Please click on the link above and watch this video, in which Hamlin Grange speaks about a company based in Canada but provides information that can be applied to workplaces in the U.S.  The presentation will introduce a framework for diversity in the workplace.  This lecture is designed to provide you with a foundational understanding of diversity and its importance to achieving a competitive advantage.

      Watching this video and pausing to take notes should take less than 15 minutes.
       
      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

    • Reading: Diversity World: Ron McInnes’ “Workforce Diversity: Changing the Way You Do Business”

      Link: Diversity World: Ron McInnes’ “Workforce Diversity: Changing the Way You Do Business” (HTML)
       
      Instructions: Please read this article, which will provide you with insight on why workplace diversity is important. The concept of diversity is framed in a number of ways in this article: as economic payback (people who have previous been excluded from the workplace are typically more reliant on social service programs) and as social responsibility (improving the quality of life for disenfranchised groups of people).  You should identify and process each of the diversity frameworks and the potential impact they can have on business success.   

      Reading this article should take approximately 15 minutes.
       
      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

    • Reading: University of North Texas: National Partnership for Reinventing Government: “Best Practices in Achieving Workforce Diversity”

      Link: University of North Texas: National Partnership for Reinventing Government: “Best Practices in Achieving Workforce Diversity” (PDF)
       
      Instructions: Please click the link above and scroll down to the “Benchmark Reports” section.  Click on “Best Practices in Achieving Workforce Diversity (2000) PDF Version” to download the PDF.  Read this article from the Executive Summary through Chapter 4 (pages 5-17 of the PDF).  Led by former Vice President of the United States Al Gore and the U.S. Department of Commerce, this report provides in-depth insight on diversity – why it is important and how it can be integrated into the workplace.  The report is broken up into 4 chapters, and each chapter builds on the previous chapter.  You will see comments from leaders of major organizations, and the report provides some strategic key findings regarding diversity that you should indeed take note of and use as a source for implementing diversity within the workplace.    

      Reading this report should take approximately 1 hour.
       
      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

  • 1.3.2 Equal Employment Opportunity  
  • 1.3.3 The Legal Framework for Managing Equal Employment and Diversity  

    Note: This topic is covered by the material assigned beneath sub-subunit 1.3.2.

  • 1.3.3.1 The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)  
  • 1.3.3.2 Types of Discrimination  
  • 1.3.3.3 Which Laws Are Enforced by the EEOC?  
  • 1.3.3.4 Which Laws Are Not Enforced by the EEOC?  
  • 1.4 Do We Still Need Affirmative Action?  
  • 1.4.1 Affirmative Action History  
    • Reading: Infoplease: Borgna Brunner’s “Affirmative Action History”

      Link: Infoplease: Borgna Brunner’s “Affirmative Action History” (HTML)
       
      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this brief article, which introduces various perspectives on affirmative action.  In the beginning of this course, we touched upon the concept of perception.  Perceptions inform and support the way in which we make decisions.  For example, when you are making a hiring decision about an employee belonging to a specific work group, your perceptions of and dealings with this particular type of person, as well as the situations or circumstances in which your interactions took place, will shape how you go about making this decision.  This analysis of affirmative action will force you to look at the discussion from both sides.

      Reading this article should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 1.4.2 Affirmative Action Milestones  
    • Reading: Infoplease: Borgna Brunner’s “Timeline of Affirmative Action Milestones”

      Link: Infoplease: Borgna Brunner’s “Timeline of Affirmative Action Milestones” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and review this timeline, which presents the formation of affirmative action as a program.  You will learn about the specific legal cases and decisions that have shaped the debate surrounding affirmative action.  You will also find additional hyperlinks that will provide you with further insight into each event in the timeline.

      Reviewing this timeline should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Unit 1 Assessments  
  • Unit 2: Staffing the Organization: Job Analysis and Description  

    Now that you understand the core components of strategy as applied to managing human capital, learn how to identify the right human capital by properly assessing and defining all of the jobs within an organization.  Identifying the right people for a firm can be very difficult.  To make things more challenging, job descriptions often do a poor job of detailing the employment environment.  By conducting a proper job analysis of all roles within a firm, hiring managers can better identify the traits they need a future employee to possess for a specific job.

    Employers seek employees with traits that fall into one of four categories: Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, and Other Characteristics.  Collectively, these traits are referred to as KSAs.  The keys to success lay not in an individual’s experience with Microsoft Office or his or her ability to work in a high stress environment, but rather in his or her capacity to learn on the job, humility in admitting fault, and temperament in a stressful situation.  In this unit, you will learn how to identify the true demands of a job and translate them into an accurate job description.

    Unit 2 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 2 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 2.1 Overview of a Job Analysis (JA)  
  • 2.1.1 Purpose of JA  
    • Reading: HR Guide to the Internet: “Job Analysis Overview”

      Link: HR Guide to the Internet: “Job Analysis Overview” (HTML)
       
      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this brief article, which provides an overview of job analysis and its associated elements.  In the body of this article, there are a number of hyperlinks that provide additional insight into the specifics of job analysis elements.  To enhance your understanding of key elements identified in the body of the article, you will need to visit and review these links.  This reading covers sub-subunits 2.1.1 through 2.1.7.

      Reading this article should take approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.
       
      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

  • 2.1.2 JA Used to Determine Training Needs  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.1.1.  Under the “Purpose of Job Analysis” section, focus on the text that appears below the “Determining Training Needs” heading.

  • 2.1.3 JA Used to Identify and Determine Compensation  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.1.1.  Focus on the text that appears below the “Compensation” link, as well as click on the link for a definition of compensation.

  • 2.1.4 JA Used to Define Selection Procedures  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.1.1.  Focus on the text that appears below the “Selection Procedures” link, as well as click on the link for a definition of personnel selection.

  • 2.1.5 JA Used to Implement Performance Reviews  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.1.1.  Focus on the text below the “Performance Review” heading.

  • 2.1.6 Methods of Job Analysis  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.1.1.  In particular, review the text below the “Methods of Job Analysis” heading.  Click on the embedded hyperlinks in this section for more information.

  • 2.1.7 What Does JA Analyze?  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.1.1.  In particular, review the section below the heading “What Aspects of a Job Are Analyzed?”

  • 2.2 Conducting Job Analysis  
  • 2.2.1 What Is Job Analysis?  
    • Reading: HR Guide to the Internet: “Job Analysis: Frequently Asked Questions”

      Link: HR Guide to the Internet: “Job Analysis: Frequently Asked Questions” (HTML)
       
      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read these frequently asked questions.  On this webpage, there are a number of hyperlinks that provide additional insight into the specifics of job analysis.  To enhance your understanding of key elements identified in this FAQ, you will need to visit and review this linked material.  This reading covers sub-subunits 2.2.1 through 2.2.6.

      Reading this webpage and the embedded hyperlinks should take approximately 3 hours.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

  • 2.2.2 Why Should You Perform a Job Analysis?  

    Note: This question is reviewed in the frequently asked questions reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.2.1.  Make sure to review the answer to this question.

  • 2.2.3 Who Conducts a Job Analysis?  

    Note: This question is reviewed in the frequently asked questions reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.2.1.  Make sure to review the answer to this question.

  • 2.2.4 How Are Jobs Analyzed?  

    Note: This question is reviewed in the frequently asked questions reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.2.1.  Make sure to review the answer to this question.

  • 2.2.5 The Steps of a Job Analysis  

    Note: This question is reviewed in the frequently asked questions reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.2.1.  Make sure to review the answer to this question.

  • 2.2.6 Additional Information on Job Analysis  

    Note: This question is reviewed in the frequently asked questions reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.2.1.  Make sure to review the answer to this question.

  • 2.3 A, B, and C Jobs – People (Human Capital)  
    • Reading: YouTube: Academic Earth: Dan Springer’s “Protecting Human Capital”

      Link: YouTube: Academic Earth: Dan Springer’s “Protecting Human Capital” (YouTube)
       
      Instructions: Please click on the link above and watch this brief video, and then write a brief paragraph that summarizes the speaker’s main points.  This short video serves as an introduction to the value of human capital.

      There can be such a thing as too many generals. When it comes to managing human capital, many organizations have a strategy for developing and nurturing their leaders.  However, to truly be successful at managing human capital, they must also be able to develop effective strategies for managing their employees.
       
      You will note that Dan Springer uses the words income statement (a financial statement that illustrates the revenue and expenses a business has incurred over a specific period; the income/loss recorded on this statement should be monitored on a regular basis, usually daily, to ensure the business is profitable) and balance sheet (a financial statement illustrating a company’s assets, liabilities, and owner’s equity).

      One of the major goals of a business should be to increase asset value.  When managing human capital, you may find that certain C-jobs and C-employees and even certain B-jobs and B-employees have the greatest impact on your income statement.  The daily functions that these employees perform to support an organization as it works to meet its goals and objectives are most often the most important.  The A-jobs and employees are those with a high degree of risk (asset or liability), which makes their impact on the organization more strategic in nature. 

      Watching this video and writing a summary paragraph should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: This video is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License. It is attributed to Stanford University and the original version can be found here.

    • Reading: ChangingMinds.org: “A-, B- and C- Jobs”

      Link: ChangingMinds.org: “A-, B-, and C- Jobs” (PDF)

      Instructions: Please read this article, which will help you develop a better understanding of A-jobs, B-jobs, and C-jobs and the associative characteristics of the people who would be ideal in those jobs.  Towards the bottom of this reading, there are hyperlinks to pages that address how to manage each type of player.  You will also find a hyperlink to a reading that addresses common A-player problems – such as the insecurities and superiority complexes.  Please visit and read these pages to ensure you obtain all necessary information associated with this part of the course.

      Reading this article should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: The material above was posted with permission by changingminds.org for educational use, and can be viewed in its original form here.

    • Assessment: The Saylor Foundation’s “Creating and Completing a Job Analysis”

      Link: The Saylor Foundation’s “Creating and Completing a Job Analysis” (PDF)

      Instructions: Please complete this assessment.  When you are finished, compare your answers against the Saylor Foundation’s “Creating and Completing a Job Analysis Answer Key” (PDF).

    • Assessment: The Saylor Foundation’s “Good or Bad Job Description”

      Link: The Saylor Foundation’s “Good or Bad Job Description” (PDF)

      Instructions: Please complete this assessment.  When you are finished, compare your answers against the Saylor Foundation’s “Job Description Assessment Answer Key” (PDF).

  • 2.4 Competency Modeling and KSAs  
  • 2.4.1 Competency Pathing and the Competency Modeling Approach  
    • Reading: BusinessDictionary.com’s “What Is a Competency-Based Approach?”

      Link: BusinessDictionary.com’s “What Is a Competency-Based Approach?” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which provides a definition of Competency-Based Modeling and contains numerous related links for further information on this subject.  This topic covers content contained in sub-subunits 2.4.1.1, 2.4.1.2, and 2.4.1.3.

      Reading this definition and exploring the related links should take less than 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

  • 2.4.1.1 Stages for Defining a Competency Model  
  • 2.4.1.2 Using Competency Models  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Using Competency Models.”

  • 2.4.1.3 Trends in Competency Modeling  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.4.1.1.  In particular, focus on the text below the heading “Future Trends in Competency Modeling.”

  • 2.4.2 KSAs (Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities) Used in Human Capital Decision-Making  
  • 2.4.2.1 What You Need to Know about KSAs  
  • 2.4.2.2 Knowledge  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.4.2.1.  In particular, focus on the definition of knowledge statements at the top of the webpage.

  • 2.4.2.3 Skills  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.4.2.1.  In particular, focus on the definition of skill statements at the top of the webpage.

  • 2.4.2.4 Abilities  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.4.2.1.  In particular, focus on the definition of ability statements at the top of the webpage.

  • 2.4.2.5 Identifying and Discussing KSAs  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.4.2.1.  In particular, focus on the section of the reading below the heading “How to Write Responses to Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs).”

  • 2.4.3 Dunning-Kruger Effect  
  • 2.5 Job Description and Job Specification  
  • 2.5.1 Why Develop a Job Description  
    • Reading: About.com: Susan Heathfield’s “How to Develop a Job Description”

      Link: About.com: Susan Heathfield’s “How to Develop a Job Description” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article.  Pay careful attention to the steps of creating a job description.  The connection between the job analysis discussed in a previous section of this course and the job description presented in this part of the course is commonly understood in Human Resource Management as the foundation for the decision to staff an organization with human capital.  This reading also covers sub-subunit 2.5.2.

      Reading this article should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 2.5.2 Steps for Developing a Job Description  

    Note: This topic is covered by the article assigned beneath sub-subunit 2.5.1.  Focus on the text below the “Steps to Develop Job Descriptions” heading.

  • 2.5.3 The Business Sense of Job Descriptions  
  • 2.5.4 The Job Specifications Relationship to KSAs, Job Analysis, and Job Description  
    • Reading: About.com: Susan Heathfield’s “Job Specification”

      Link: About.com: Susan Heathfield’s “Job Specification” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article.  Pay careful attention to the various components of a job specification, as each component is important to the process of making strategic human capital management decisions, which assist in meeting and exceeding organizational goals and objectives.  Make sure to click on any embedded hyperlinks for more information; in particular, make sure to click on the link to the sample job specification.

      Reading this article should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Unit 3: Recruitment and Selection  

    Identifying the traits one will need for success in a position is relatively easy compared to the daunting task of identifying those traits within an applicant.  Given the cyclicality of unemployment, you will likely receive a pile of resumes simply by posting an opening on a company website or job board.  But how many of those resumes will be worth looking through?  How many will be worth interviewing?  And will any of them be the right person for the job?  You do not want to just select the best person in the applicant pool; you want to find the best person for the job.  Sometimes this means going beyond the normal labor market and recruiting people currently employed at other firms.

    There are a number of methods of recruiting the right talent.  Some firms prefer to use specialized recruiting firms, while others ask their current employees for recommendations.  The point is that a firm needs to cast the widest net possible in order to secure a large applicant pool.

    Then, the firm must face the challenge of selecting the right applicant by determining whether he or she possesses the KSAs discussed in the last unit.  Like it or not, the interview method of selection is one of the weakest forms of selection.  Critics argue that it is too subjective. While subjectivity is not a bad thing, it must be paired with the right objective measures.  This unit will cover a number of such measures that can be useful in identifying candidates.  Please note that interviews are still very important and that there are “right” and “wrong” ways to conduct interviews, all of which will be addressed here.

    One of the key points to remember when recruiting and selecting human capital is that you should identify individuals who share the company’s ideas about the goals and objectives of its business.  You should work to identify unique individuals with shared and complementary skill sets in order to build an effective team.  Recruiting and selecting human capital should be carried out in order to provide the organization with a strategic advantage.

    Unit 3 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 3 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 3.1 Recruitment of Human Capital  
  • 3.1.1 Strategy for Recruitment and Selection  
    • Lecture: YouTube: Mike Moore’s “8 Steps to Recruitment Success”

      Link: YouTube: Mike Moore’s “8 Steps to Recruitment Success” (YouTube)

      Instructions: Please watch this video, which provides an overview of 8 components of successful recruiting: Workforce Planning, Candidate Profiling, Employment Branding, Sourcing, Screening/Assessing, Selection Process, Retention, and Technology.  Please take notes and write a sentence or two for each component of successful recruiting.

      Watching this video and taking notes should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 3.1.2 Sources of Recruitment  
    • Reading: Management Study Guide’s “Types of Recruitment”

      Link: Management Study Guide’s “Types of Recruitment” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article.  When making the decision to recruit human capital, every organization must assess the unique characteristics of its situation and determine whether it will execute internal or external recruiting activities.

      Reading this article should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 3.1.3 Internal vs. External Recruitment: Advantages and Disadvantages  
  • 3.2 The Process of Recruiting and Selecting Human Capital  
  • 3.2.1 The Key to Recruitment  
    • Reading: The Open University’s Human Resources: Recruitment and Selection: “Effective Recruitment and Selection”

      Link: The Open University’s Human Resources: Recruitment and Selection: “Effective Recruitment and Selection (PDF)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article.  Before you read, try your hand at the activity in the blue box on the first page of this PDF.  Then read the article.  Though all of us have our own sets of experiences and opinions, it is important that we do not place our organizations in a situation of liability as a result of our individual biases, as they may not be strategically aligned with the best interests of the organization.  You must learn to work through personal perceptions and make strategic business decisions when recruiting and selecting human capital.

      Reading this article should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: The linked material above has been reposted by the kind permission of  The Open University, and can be viewed in its original from here.  Please note that this material is under copyright and cannot be reproduced in any capacity without explicit permission from the copyright holder.

  • 3.2.2 Person-Job Fit vs. Person-Organization Fit  
    • Reading: The Open University’s Human Resources: Recruitment and Selection: “Person – Job Fit or Person-Organization Fit”

      Link: The Open University’s Human Resources: Recruitment and Selection: “Person – Job Fit or Person-Organization Fit (PDF)
       
      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which identifies what is really important when you are recruiting human capital.  Should you focus on finding individuals who are a good fit for a particular job, or who fit the organization in general?  This is yet another strategic decision in the process of successfully recruiting and managing human capital.

      Reading this article should take approximately 15 minutes.
       
      Terms of Use: The linked material above has been reposted by the kind permission of The Open University, and can be viewed in its original from here.  Please note that this material is under copyright and cannot be reproduced in any capacity without explicit permission from the copyright holder. 

  • 3.2.3 Specifying Job and Person Requirements  
  • 3.3 Recruiting and Selecting Human Capital in the 21st Century  
  • 3.3.1 Using the Internet to Recruit Human Capital  
  • 3.3.2 The Impact of Social Networking on Recruit Human Capital  
  • 3.4 How to Select Human Capital  
  • 3.4.1 Methods of Selection  
    • Reading: HR Guide to the Internet: “Personnel Selection: Methods”

      Link: HR Guide to the Internet: “Personnel Selection: Methods” (HTML)

      Instructions: Pleases click on the link above and read this article, which identifies and provides a foundation for understanding different approaches to recruiting and selecting human capital.  Make sure to click on the links for “Interviews” through “Assessment Centers,” and read the information on each of these webpages.  This resource also covers the topics outlined in sub-subunits 3.4.2 and 3.4.3.

      Reading this article should take approximately 2 hours.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 3.4.2 Selection Method: Cognitive Tests  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 3.4.1.  Make sure to click on the link to “Cognitive Ability Tests,” and read the information on that webpage.

  • 3.4.3 Selection Method: Personality Tests  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 3.4.1.  Make sure to click on the link to “Personality Tests,” and read the information on that webpage.

  • 3.4.4 Employment Background Check  
    • Reading: About.com: Alison Doyle’s “Background Check: Employment”

      Link: About.com: Alison Doyle’s “Background Check: Employment” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this  article, which identifies the methodology behind performing background checks.  Throughout this article, there are additional hyperlinks that further break down core elements of this part of the course; click on these links and read all associated content.

      Reading this article should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Unit 3 Assessment  
  • Unit 4: Training and Development/Career Planning  

    Once you have completed the recruitment process, it is crucial that you properly train and develop your human capital.  As you go through this unit, think of training as a process used to inform new members of the specifics associated with the jobs that they have assumed.  Development should be thought of as a continuous process of improvement and as an opportunity to provide human capital with the updates and insight needed to be successful on the job.  Career planning refers to the process of mapping the career growth of your human capital and building strong relationships between human capital and the management team.  Note: Career planning is sometimes referred to as succession planning.

    Unit 4 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 4 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 4.1 Training and Development of Human Capital  
  • 4.1.1 Purpose of Employee Training and Development  
    • Reading: BizMove Business Guides: “Employee Training and Development”

      Link: BizMove Business Guides: “Employee Training and Development” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which provides the foundation for understanding the elements associated with training. The goal of this reading is to help you more fully understand training and its impact on the organization’s ability to effectively manage human capital.  This reading covers sub-subunits 4.1.1 to 4.1.9.

      Reading this article should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 4.1.2 The Training Process  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “The Training Process.”

  • 4.1.3 Identifying Training Needs  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Identifying Training Needs.”

  • 4.1.4 Selection of Trainees  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Selection of Trainees.”

  • 4.1.5 Training Goals  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Training Goals.”

  • 4.1.6 Training Methods  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Training Methods.”

  • 4.1.7 Who Conducts the Training?  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Trainers.”

  • 4.1.8 Training Administration  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Training Administration.”

  • 4.1.9 Evaluation of Training  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.1.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Evaluation of Training.”

  • 4.1.10 Making Training and Development Work  
  • 4.1.11 Training Transfer is for the Organization and the Employee  
  • 4.2 Career Planning/Succession Planning of Human Capital  
  • 4.2.1 What is New with Succession Planning?  
  • 4.2.2 Best Practices for Succession Planning  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Best Practices for Succession Planning.”

  • 4.2.3 Developmental Activities in Support of Succession Planning  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Developmental Activities.”

  • 4.2.4 Internal Leadership and Education  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Internal Leadership and Executive Education.”

  • 4.2.5 Development Plans and Courses  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Development Plans and Courses.”

  • 4.2.6 Measuring Long-Term Success  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Measuring Long-Term Success.”

  • 4.2.7 What Does Career Planning Measure?  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “What Is Measured?”

  • 4.2.8 Best Practices: Metrics  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Best Practices: Metrics.”

  • 4.2.9 Other Lessons for Success  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Other Lessons for Success.”

  • 4.2.10 Trends in Succession Management  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Trends in Succession Management.”

  • 4.2.11 How Technology Can Improve Planning  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 4.2.1.  Focus on the text below the heading “Technology Can Improve Planning.”

  • Unit 4 Assessment  
  • Unit 5: Performance Management and Measurement  

    In the last unit, you learned about human capital development and training.  Mastering and applying this information is crucial to helping you become more effective at identifying and creating a performance management and measurement system.  Firms often use performance management systems in order to properly identify the success of their employees.  “Success” in the workplace is often defined by an individual’s ability to live up to the demands of his or her position.  With proper job analysis, it should be easy to quantify the level of success or failure that each employee has reached.  However, it is important to recognize that all humans are subject to certain biases – leniency and the halo effect are good examples – when asked to provide feedback.  (Leniency refers to a manager’s tendency to be “too nice” out of fear of hurting the feelings of his or her employee.  The halo effect refers to a situation in which a manager focuses on one positive aspect of an employee’s performance as opposed to the performance as a whole over the evaluation period.  The manager might, for example, fixate on the fact that an employee obtained a high-profile client or made a profitable sale, despite poor performance in all other aspects of the job.)  Employees should be made aware of such tendencies in order to strive toward a more balanced evaluation process.

    Meanwhile, in a performance appraisal, one employee (frequently a manager) reviews the performance of another employee.  Many successful firms (including Infosys, one of the largest IT companies in India) use what are known as “360 degree reviews.”  In the 360 degree review, the employee also reviews the manager.  Firm managers should explore various types of appraisal systems in order to determine which fits best with the firm’s culture and strategy.

    Unit 5 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 5 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 5.1 Performance Management Systems  
  • 5.1.1 Purpose of Performance Management  
    • Lecture: YouTube: Kathleen Greer Associates’ “Performance Management”

      Link: YouTube: Kathleen Greer Associates’ “Performance Management” (YouTube)

      Instructions: Watch this lecture, which explains the difference between performance management and performance appraisal.  To effectively manage human capital, you must know the difference between the two.  In short, performance management (PM) is a system designed to integrate with the strategy of a firm; it must be valid and universal.  The performance appraisal (PA) is the actual, real-time review of an individual within the firm.  Consider it metaphorically: the PM system is like an interstate highway while the appraisal is just one car on the highway.  That car needs the right signs, speed limits, and proper road quality to have a successful trip.  After viewing the video, try to write a brief paragraph that summarizes the differences between performance management and performance appraisal.

      Watching this lecture and writing your paragraph should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.1.2 Let’s Diagnose the Problems of Human Capital Performance  
  • 5.2 Performance Appraisal for Human Capital  
  • 5.2.1 What Is the Point of an Appraisal?  
    • Reading: Work911.com: Robert Bacal’s “What Is the Point Of Performance Appraisal?”

      Link: Work911.com: Robert Bacal’s “What Is the Point Of Performance Appraisal?” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which explains the significance of the performance appraisal.  The primary purpose of the performance appraisal is to improve performance, but there are too many instances in which this is not the end result.  This reading will set the stage for understanding the basics of performance appraisal.

      Reading this article should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.2.2 Biases Associated with Performance Appraisals  
  • 5.2.2.1 Halo Effect  
  • 5.2.2.2 Central Tendency  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.2.1.  Make sure to review the definition of this term in the reading.

  • 5.2.2.3 Recency Bias  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.2.1.  Make sure to review the definition of this term in the reading.

  • 5.2.2.4 Leniency Bias  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.2.1.  Make sure to review the definition of this term in the reading.

  • 5.2.2.5 Opportunity Bias  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.2.1.  Make sure to review the definition of this term in the reading.

  • 5.2.2.6 False Attribution Errors  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.2.1.  Make sure to review the definition of this term in the reading.

  • 5.2.3 Screwing up the Appraisal  
  • 5.2.4 Performance Appraisal Methods  
    • Reading: HRVInet: Davi Ngo’s “Performance Appraisal Methods”

      Link: HRVInet: Davi Ngo’s “Performance Appraisal Methods” (HTML)
       
      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which discusses several of the more popular methods of appraising performance.  Be sure to click on the hyperlinks in each title to read about each item in more detail; also be sure to click the links under Part II and Part III.  This reading covers sub-subunits 5.2.4.1 to 5.2.4.11.

      Reading this article should take approximately 2 hours.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.2.4.1 Critical Incident  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Critical Incident” link for item 1 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.2 Weighted Checklist  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Weighted Checklist” link for item 2 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.3 Paired Comparison Analysis  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Paired Comparison Analysis” link for item 3 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.4 Graphic Rating Scales  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Graphic Rating Scales” link for item 4 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.5 Essay Evaluation  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Essay Evaluation” link for item 5 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.6 Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales” link for item 6 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.7 Performance Ranking Method  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Performance Ranking Method” link for item 7 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.8 Management by Objectives  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Management by Objectives” link for item 8 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.9 360 Degree Review  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “360 Degree Performance Appraisal” link for item 9 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.10 Forced Ranking (Forced Distribution)  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Forced Ranking” link for item 10 to access a webpage with more information.

  • 5.2.4.11 Behavioral Observation Scale  

    Note: This topic is covered in the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 5.2.4.  Read the brief definition and click on the “Behavioral Observation Scale” link for item 11 to access a webpage with more information.

  • Unit 5 Assessment  
  • Unit 6: Compensation and Benefits  

    When an employer is making a hiring decision, he or she must consider a number of factors, including the cost of compensating human capital.  In most cases within a business, this is the highest overhead cost consumed by an organization.  Because poor financial planning is one of the top 10 risk factors associated with business failure, it is extremely important that an employer understands the many elements associated with the development and application of a compensation program.  An employer must also be aware of compensation, as it is a tool used to attract and retain human capital.  At different stages of an employee’s life, he or she will have different workplace needs.  An organization may have some employees who value direct financial compensation and others who have an immediate need for other, more indirect benefits, like tuition reimbursement or child care.  The key is to understand the dynamics of a compensation program and develop an organizational program that serves the needs of the organization, as well as the human capital employed by the organization.

    In times of recession, there is usually a larger labor force in search of work.  This gives employers leverage when hiring; some can drive down the associated human capital cost of employment due to the high supply of labor.  However, the key to retaining good people in any environment, including in periods of high growth, is usually compensation.  Compensation is not just about a salary or bonus – it is about work/life balance, perks, and contentment.  The happiest employees are not necessarily the ones in the highest pay grade.  Often times, the most successful companies pay less than their competitors because  they have created an environment that is pleasant to work in.

    Much of the chatter surrounding compensation today revolves around executive pay, as the disparity between executive pay and employee pay has grown dramatically over the decades.  This widening gap is largely due to the fact that firms have been aligning executive compensation with firm performance.  For publicly traded companies, performance is often measured in terms of profitability or stock price performance.  This system is problematic in that it incentivizes executives to take on too much risk, as they are guaranteed compensation no matter what happens.  This unit will explore this issue as well as others pertaining to compensation and benefits.

    Unit 6 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 6 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 6.1 Compensation of Human Capital  
  • 6.1.1 Defining Compensation  
  • 6.1.2 Compensation and Benefits from A to Z  
  • 6.1.2.1 Introduction to How Employee Compensation Works  
    • Reading: HowStuffWorks.com: Lee Ann Orbringer’s “How Employee Compensation Works”

      Link: HowStuffWorks.com: Lee Ann Orbringer’s “How Employee Compensation Works” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which discusses at length the full process of setting up and establishing a compensation system.  A variety of compensation and benefit elements are covered – everything from forms of compensation and health insurance to government requirements.  Be sure to read all of the sections of this article.  This reading covers sub-subunits 6.1.2.1 to 6.1.2.16.

      Reading this article should take approximately 3 hours.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 6.1.2.2 Establishing a Compensation Structure  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Setting up Your Compensation Structure” on page 2 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.3 Forms of Compensation  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Forms of Compensation” on page 3 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.4 Health Insurance  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Health Insurance” on page 4 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.5 Disability and Life Insurance  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Disability and Life Insurance” on page 5 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.6 Paid Time Off  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Paid Time Off” on page 6 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.7 Other Leave and Benefits  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Stock Options/Profit Sharing” on page 7 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.8 Stock Options and Profit Sharing  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Health Insurance” on page 8 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.9 Retirement Plans  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Retirement Plans” on page 9 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.10 Money Purchase Plans  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Money Purchase Plans” on page 10 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.11 Other Benefits and Policies  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Other Benefits and Policies” on page 11 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.12 Employee Assistance Programs  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Employee Assistance Plans” on page 12 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.13 Cost-Free Benefits and Perks  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Cost-Free Benefits and Perks” and “Mote Cost-Free Benefits and Perks on pages 13 and 14 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.14 Regulatory Issues and Government Regulations  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Regulatory Issues and Government Regulations” on page 15 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.15 Avoiding ADA and FMLA  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “Be Careful of…” on page 16 of the article.

  • 6.1.2.16 Creating More Attractive Benefits than the Competition  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.1.2.1.  Please focus on “The Competition” on page 17 of the article.

  • 6.2 The Basics on 401k Plans  
  • 6.2.1 Introduction to How 401k Plans Work  
    • Reading: HowStuffWorks.com: Lee Ann Orbringer’s “How 401k Plans Work”

      Link: HowStuffWorks.com: Lee Ann Orbringer’s “How 401k Plans Work” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which discusses at length the full process of creating a 401k.  You will find a number of videos that reinforce the concepts presented in this reading.  Please watch these.  For example, at the end of the introduction on page 1, there is a short video from an investment professional at Putnam Investments who talks about how Americans are hurting their financial futures by using their 401ks during the economic crisis that began in 2008.  On page 2 of the article, you will find an illustrative chart as well as various financial calculators that will help you enhance your understanding of the financial impact saving and investing your money will have on your future.  Please pay careful attention to this supporting information and be sure to read and/or practice using these support elements. This reading covers sub-subunits 6.2.1 to 6.2.11.

      Reading this article should take approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 6.2.2 What Makes a 401k Different From Other Retirement Plans?  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “What Makes a 401k Different?” on page 2.  Pay careful attention to the chart on this page.

  • 6.2.3 401k vs. Stocks  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “401k vs. Stocks” on page 3. 

  • 6.2.4 Borrowing From Your Account  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “Borrowing from Your Account” on page 4. 

  • 6.2.5 How Much to Contribute  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “How Much to Contribute” on page 5. 

  • 6.2.6 Deciding Where to Invest  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “Deciding Where to Invest” on page 6. 

  • 6.2.7 Making Your 401k Investment Selections  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “Making Your Selections” on page 7. 

  • 6.2.8 Doing Your Homework and Making Good Decisions  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “Doing Your Homework” on page 8. 

  • 6.2.9 What to Watch Out For as You Invest Your Money  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “What to Watch out for” on page 9.

  • 6.2.10 Employers Benefit and Responsibility  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “Employers Benefit and Responsibility” on page 10. 

  • 6.2.11 Regulatory Compliance Issues  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 6.2.1.  This topic is covered under “Regulatory Compliance Issues” on page 11. 

  • Unit 6 Assessment  
  • Unit 7: Safety and Health  

    By now, you should more fully understand the significance of managing human capital as a strategic part of any business platform.  It is important that you recognize how all of the human capital management concepts come together to support an organization that enjoys a competitive advantage over others within its market.  It is also important that you understand that the employer is responsible for making the job attractive to potential human capital candidates and enticing them with an environment that incentivizes employees to work and grow with the organization. While you have covered a lot as this course has progressed, there are still some key factors to be addressed as you develop an understanding of how to manage human capital.  One of those key areas is the safety and health of human capital.

    At a most basic level, the employer is responsible for sending its employees home in the same manner in which they arrived.  The concept of safety is so important that the government has created a special department – the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) – whose sole focus is the safety and well-being of employees within the workplace. Every single workplace environment must comply with OSHA regulations.

    Employers must also be concerned with the health of their human capital.  Healthy employees boost workplace performance and productivity, use fewer sick day benefits, and are more likely to build stronger and longer-lasting relationships with their employers.  When an employee or potential employee sees that an employer is concerned about his or her personal well-being, he or she is more likely to become and remain a part of that organization.  Note: Employee Health is sometimes referred to as employee wellness.

    Unit 7 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 7 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 7.1 OSHA’s Impact on Human Capital Management  
  • 7.1.1 The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970  
    • Reading: U.S. Department of Labor’s “Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970”

      Link: U.S. Department of Labor’s “Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970” (PDF)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this report, which takes a comprehensive look at the act that governs the safety of human capital in the workplace. There is a lot of information on OSHA’s website, and a great deal of it is categorized by industry.  Every organization should be aware of the specific information associated with its industry and should have a general understanding of OSHA and its standards.  You are strongly encouraged to browse OSHA’s website to enhance your understanding of what they require of an employer.

      Reading this report should take approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: This material is in the public domain, and can be viewed in its original form here.

  • 7.1.2 OSHA Compliance in the Workplace  
  • 7.1.3 OSHA Inspections Protect Workers  
  • 7.2 Employee Health and Wellness  
  • 7.2.1 What Is Employee Wellness?  
  • 7.2.2 What are the Benefits of Employee Wellness?  
  • 7.2.3 Wellness Programs and Employee Health  
  • 7.2.4 Creating a Wellness Program  
  • 7.2.5 Drug and Alcohol Testing is a Part of Wellness  
  • Unit 7 Assessment  
  • Unit 8: Labor and Employee Relations  

    In this final unit of the course, we will discuss labor and employee relations and conclude with a brief perspective on how ethical concerns pervade all aspects of human resource management.  As mentioned earlier in the course, an employer wants to create an environment that is attractive to potential and current employees.  As you have already learned, the relationship between employer and employee can be a bit tricky.  The employer has specific expectations when it makes the decision to bring a new employee on board.  The employee has or should have an expectation of the employer when he or she decides to join and/or stay with an organization.  Sometimes, there are significant discrepancies between what the employer needs/wants and what the employee needs/wants.  In these situations, labor relations – or more specifically, labor unions – can help strengthen the employer/employee relationship.

    Labor relations is a subfield of Human Capital Management concerned with labor unions in the workplace.  Labor unions are independent third parties that represent the collective interest of the employees within a particular industry.  Just as a marriage counselor serves as a mediator between a husband and a wife, a labor union seeks to balance the differences between employer and employee.

    Employee relations is a subfield of Human Capital Management concerned with the prevention and/or resolution of workplace problems.  This subfield encompasses poor performance and disciplinary action, the identification and promotion of policies/procedures, and the communication and promotion of awareness of the laws and legislation that impact the managing of human capital.  These activities ensure that efficiency, equity, and voice can be achieved in the workplace for both the employer and the employee.  But what exactly do we mean by efficiency, equity, and voice?

    Efficiency relates to the ability to achieve a workplace goal with a minimal or minimized investment of resources.  An employer seeks to achieve efficiency by engaging the most productive human capital and using the least amount of business resources.  An employee seeks to achieve efficiency by asking for a specific balance between his or her time contributions to the organization and the economic outputs provided by the employer.  Both an employee and an employer want workplace processes to be structured in such a way that each feels there is value for what they are contributing.  Efficiency addresses the questions of: am I getting an equal or opposite response to the amount of work I am putting in?  Are you motivated to help me be successful?  Can I trust that within our relationship, you have my best interest in mind?

    Equity relates to the partnership ideal in the relationship between the employer and the employee.  The key to understanding equity is identifying with the fact that the business environment is typically not a democracy.  An employer creates and enforces the workplace rules and processes that it considers necessary to conducting business.  If an employee works for this organization, the anticipation is for them to comply, as employers typically make them aware of these expectations.  Is the workplace environment stable and fair?  Is there room to grow and do more?  Am I treated like a subordinate or a true partner?  These are just some of the questions asked when assessing the equity in the relationship between the employer and the employee.

    In personal relationships, there are times when one person feels that the other is not listening.  The same applies to the relationship between employer/employee.  Employees typically want to work for an employer who enables them to be heard and to contribute to the functioning of the organization.  An employer wants an organization in which employees have actively listened to and engaged in the proper application of any workplace rules, processes, and procedures, with minimal to no infraction.  In both cases, the employee and employer are looking to “achieve voice” in their organizations.  Most, if not all, organizations try to assist in the achievement of voice by providing hotlines for employees to communicate, implementing suggestion boxes for the anonymous submission of ideas or comments about the workplace environment, and establishing an open door policy.  Because the employer is the more dominant partner in this relationship, the balance between efficiency, equity, and voice can appear to be a bit one sided; this is where labor and employee relations step in.

    Ethical conduct requires us to ask difficult questions.  Firms need to make the distinction between legal compliance and ethical decision making. Ethical lapses have been responsible for U.S. companies losing billions of dollars in class action law suits.  Individual employees must also take responsibility to adhere to their firms’ codes of  conduct, codes of ethics, and various policies written to protect the employee, the company, the community and other entities their organization serves  Articles below describe some of the issues and challenges faced by human resource professionals today to ensure these codes of conduct, codes of ethics and company policies are disseminated, acknowledged and  followed and accurately reflect the values and mission of their firms.

    Unit 8 Time Advisory   show close
    Unit 8 Learning Outcomes   show close
  • 8.1 Labor Relations and Human Capital Management  
  • 8.1.1 What Are Labor Relations?  
  • 8.1.2 Labor Unions and Their History  
  • 8.1.3 Collective Bargaining and Labor Relations  
  • 8.1.3.1 History of Collective Bargaining and Labor Relations  
  • 8.1.3.2 Labor Relations in the United States  

    Note: This topic is covered by the reading assigned beneath sub-subunit 8.1.3.1.

  • 8.1.3.3 The Foundation of Collective Bargaining  
    • Web Media: CNN Money: “What Is Collective Bargaining?”

      Link: CNN Money: “What Is Collective Bargaining?” (Flash)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and watch this brief video, which introduces the pros and cons of collective bargaining.  After you watch the video, write a brief paragraph that summarizes collective bargaining.

      Watching this video and writing your paragraph should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 8.1.4 Are Labor Unions Extinct?  
  • 8.1.4.1 The Renaissance of Labor Unions  
  • 8.2 Employee Relations and Human Capital Management  
  • 8.2.1 Overview of Employee Relations  
  • 8.2.2 Getting the Job Done and Getting Along  
  • 8.2.3 Transactions within the Employment Relationship  
  • 8.2.4 Relevant Laws and Rights for Employee Relations  
    • Reading: Nolo’s “Employee Rights & Law Center”

      Link: Nolo’s “Employee Rights & Law Center” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which presents detailed responses to various employee relation questions and issues that impact the workplace from a legal standpoint. Each section contains a link to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).  In order to view the assigned content for this subunit, please scroll through each designated section and review the information under each hyperlink.  Various employment laws relating to these topics are defined in sub-subunit 8.2.5.

      Reading this article should take approximately 1 hour.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 8.2.5 Relevant Laws for Employee Relations  
    • Reading: The Free Dictionary: “Employment Law Definitions”

      Link: The Free Dictionary: “Employment Law Definitions” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on the link above and read this article, which includes a brief history, a discussion of OSHA, and a discussion on the Fair Labor Standards Act.  Scroll down to the bottom of page to “Cross-References” to click on links which offer additional definitions of various employment laws.  Various rights associated with these laws are covered in Subunit 8.2.4.

      Reading this article should take approximately 30 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 8.3 The Role of Ethics in Human Resource Management  
  • 8.3.1 Ethical Issues in Human Resources  
    • Reading: Management Study Guide’s “Ethical Issues in HR”

      Link: Management Study Guide’s “Ethical Issues in HR” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please click on link above and read this article, which gives a brief overview of various ethical issues the Human Resources professional must cope with, including employment, compensation and benefits, industrial relations, and health and safety.  Information relating to the role of Human Resource professionals and ongoing ethical challenges in Human Resources are covered in sub-subunits 8.3.2 and 8.3.3.

      Reading this article should take approximately 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 8.3.2 How Human Resources Can Help Build an Ethical Organization  
  • 8.3.3 Ethical Challenges in Human Resources  
    • Reading: Santa Clara University’s Markkula Center for Applied Ethics Business and Organizational Ethics Partnership: James O’Toole’s “Ethical Challenges in Human Resources”

      Link: Santa Clara University’s Markkula Center for Applied Ethics Business and Organizational Ethics Partnership: James O’Toole’s “Ethical Challenges in Human Resources” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this article, which emphasizes the need for organizational leaders and human resource professionals to monitor “an entire raft of HR-associated issues” to ensure that “adequate risk assessment is performed in the corporation’s major human-capital systems: selection and recruitment processes, training policies and programs, performance appraisal systems, executive compensation, sales and other forms of incentive compensation, base pay and benefit determination, talent management systems (including manpower and succession planning), labor relations, etc.”  O’Toole espouses the point of view that ethical organizations are those that ask the tough questions including “Is Legal Compliance the Same as Ethical Behavior?”

      Reading this article should take approximately 1 hour.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Unit 8 Assessment  
  • Final Exam  

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